I’m addicted to using Digital Media!

In this week’s lecture, the activity associated with it (24 Digital Diary) taught me a lot about myself and my digital usage.  I think like everyone else my age, the constant desire to track and share has become part of our culture because of our need for attention.  We often feel the need to share every little moment of our lives in hope’s of receiving admiration and approval from other’s and in turn, we also want to know about every inch of the lives of others to admire and compare them to ours.  As technology advances, this culture develops more and more and becomes more prevalent in today’s society because the ability to share and connect becomes easier and more accessible than before.  In analyzing my 24 Digital Diary, I’ve realized I use digital media a lot more often than I thought.  Every free moment I get, and even when I’m occupied doing something, I always seem to pick up my phone and check my Facebook, Instagram or Twitter for recent updates from friends and celebrities.  Personally, I don’t share a lot on social media, however, I do find I’m constantly lurking through what other’s have shared and this actually consumes a lot of time in my day.

This week’s lecutre also discussed the principles of a good infographic.  Below I will discuss these principles by analyzing a few examples of infographics that I find to be very well done.

Source: http://blog.leeandlow.com/2015/09/21/infographic-the-diversity-gap-in-the-emmys-2015/
Source: http://blog.leeandlow.com/2015/09/21/infographic-the-diversity-gap-in-the-emmys-2015/

This is a perfect representation of an excellent infographic as all principles of a good infographic are present.

  1. The story for this infographic is very compelling.  Diversity is a very relevant issue in today’s society and so, by addressing this issue in a popular award show such as the Emmy’s makes the story very captivating.
  2. The data for this infographic does an excellent job at reinforcing the story. The data is simple and easy to follow while effectively strengthening and supporting the thesis of the infographic.
  3. The visual style of this infographic does a great job at supporting the story as numerous easy to follow diagrams are used as well as the infographic itself is simple and easy for people of all ages to understand.  Also, the colours used are effective in the infographic as the writing and the colour in the diagrams for the percentage of white people receiving awards is in white, further supporting the argument of the diversity gap.
  4. The infographic is very easy to share as it has a very intriguing title and is a topic that is extremely relevant in today’s society.  Diversity is a huge issue today and by analyzing the gap in the Emmy’s, an awards show that reaches out to people of all ages, races, and genders, it’s easily relatable to everyone.
Source: http://www.forbes.com/sites/niallmccarthy/2015/04/13/the-most-successful-movie-franchises-in-history-infographic/
Source: http://www.forbes.com/sites/niallmccarthy/2015/04/13/the-most-successful-movie-franchises-in-history-infographic/

This is another great representation of an excellent infographic containing all the principles of a good infographic.

  1. The story for this infographic is an interesting and popular topic making it very compelling.  Everyone loves to watch movies and so, it is intriguing to find out which movie franchises are the most successful.
  2. This infographic has excellent data that is simple and easy to follow while providing the reader with information pertinent to the topic.
  3. The visual style of this infographic supports the topic very well with the simple colours, the movie-related picture and the easy to follow diagram.
  4. The infographic is extremely easy to share as it is a topic that is intriguing to people of all ages since everyone watches movies, and the majority of people have seen the movies listed in the infographic.


Album Cover

The concept of my album cover was to take one of my favourite songs off of Ariana Grande’s very first album and to make a cover based off of this song.  The goal of my album cover was to create a cover that not only reflected the meaning behind the title of the song, but to produce a cover that would maintain the girly and classy persona of Ariana Grande herself, while using a unique double exposure effect.

The target audience for my album cover is the same audience that Ariana Grande reaches.  This mostly includes young girls and girls in their teens.

The skills I used to create my album cover were a variety of different tools in Photoshop. I started off by using the lasso tool to cut out some of the background so that only the faces were present in the image.  This was followed by the desaturation of these faces and creating a layer mask for the face layer and the background layer.  Define brush preset was then used to create a brush that is the same shape as the faces.  This new brush shape was later used in the background layer to bring out the two faces, while having the background image still shine through.  Along with adjusting the brightness and contrast of both the faces and the background, in the end, I was able to create a double exposure effect as the main concept of the cover.

The challenges I anticipated while making the album cover were that I wasn’t going to really know what tools to use in order to achieve my objective… I am very much a beginner using Photoshop.  Along the way, the challenges I ended up encountering were both in coming up with idea of what I wanted the album cover to look like, and in Photoshop itself.

From the start, when coming up with the idea for the cover, I knew immediately that I was going to use photgraphs.  However, I wasn’t sure exactly what I wanted to do with the pictures and how I was going to manipulate them.  As a result of this, I actually ended up making four different versions of the album cover which are all very different from one another.

In Photoshop itself, some of the challenges I encountered were trying to keep a steady hand when using the lasso tool, as well as, using a lot of trial and error in trying to figure out which tools are used for what and how to use them appropriately.

The biggest thing I learned during the process of creating my album cover was that I was capable of a lot more than I thought.  This was really my first time using Photoshop on my own with no tutorial and no real sense of direction and so, I was very worried that I wouldn’t know how to go about creating an album cover.  However, my final product actually ended up exceeding my expectations and consequently increasing my self confidence.

Looking at the end result of my album cover, I think I was able to achieve my original goal of creating a cover that reflected the message of the title while maintaining Ariana Grande’s persona.  In addition, I think I was able to successfully address the target audience of young girls to teenage girls with my image choice, manipulation of these images, and my choice of typeface, which are all relevant to the majority of young girls’ interests.

I have a big footprint!

In this week’s lecture, another topic that is very prevalent in my life, but I have never thought much about was discussed.  This topic was my digital footprint.  In today’s society, technology has become a forefront in our lives.  As a result, it has ended up shaping and influencing a lot in what we do: people nowadays are constantly on their phones, checking their email, surfing the web, or using various social media sites.  Due to such advancements in technology, we are only a click away to unlimited information.  Before this lecture, I never realized that the collection of all these things makeup one’s digital footprint.  Every time you log in to a social media account, text, check your email or search something up on the internet, you leave a footprint.

Now as I reflect, I have a very active and big footprint as my presence on social media and the internet in general is very high.  Personally, my footprint reflects an accurate positive image of who I am and so, I wouldn’t really change my activity or participation online.  However, if not conscious of your footprint: what you post, what sites you visit, what you say, etc… it’s possible for your digital footprint to reflect a negative image of yourself.  In this case, it is important to be careful how we use the internet and to ensure our online identities mirror the lifestyles we want people to see.

As a whole, I do believe we should share our lives online with others as it is an easy and unique way of creating relationships and letting other’s learn about us.  However, it is also important not to share too much online… the internet can be dangerous, so before you post anything, be sure to have your safety in mind.